Producer Forward Mazuruse: Seduction is real in studios

Producer Forward Mazuruse: Seduction is real in studios. His surprise birthday party was organised by Esteem Communications under the aegis of Takemore Mazuruse. But it was the Music for Development Studios (formerly Revival Studios) boss’ piece of advice set to inspire young producers.

Producer reveals as he celebrates 40th birthday. Music producer Forward Mazuruse says seduction by female artistes in exchange for free studio time is real.

He, however, said he has managed to overcome the temptation by sticking to his principles. Mazuruse opened up over the weekend as he celebrated his 40th birthday and two decades in the game as a session artist and producer.

Like any other job, Mazuruse said a lot happens in the studio booth where producers need to be firm and principled. “I have been a producer for years now but a lot happens behind the scenes, especially ladies who want free studio time.

“Some of the ladies offer their bodies for free in exchange for studio time. “This has been happening for ages and one needs to be strong otherwise you risk working for free. “In my case, I always avoid ladies who are loose because I know I will be killing my reputation and working for nothing,” he said.

Mazuruse who started off working from home said his wife Nancy has been supportive to him. “My wife understands the nature of my job and she is the one who gives me strength, especially when I am down.

“I respect her a lot and she is the reason why I am never tempted or seduced by loose women who visit the studio for favours,” he said.

Mazuruse, who has served Fungisai Zvakavapano for past eight years as a session artiste, said focus has made him strong.

“As a session musician, I have always wanted to be a producer to ensure that I nurture young talent after realising that I can’t be working for others for the rest of my life. “I then decided to set up a studio at home and we would borrow equipment from others.

“I used proceeds from show earnings to buy equipment and the sales from albums Guitar Praise Volume 1 recorded in 2008, Guitar Praise Volume 2 (2010). “I started off in Warren Park, moved to Hillside, later Rainbow Towers but now we are operating at No. 95 Baines Avenues in the capital.

“Over the years, I have produced household names like Fungisai, Allan Chimbetu, David Hondoyedzomba, Liberty Ticharwa, the late John Mutoko, Prince Musarurwa (late), Sety Mandivheya, Tongesayi Rusere among others. “I have been working with Tanzanian diva Betty Barongo and the experience was quite amazing. “We are still in touch with a number of projects line-up,” he said.

As a way of giving back to the community, Mazuruse has been empowering less privileged artistes under the Music for Development Studios banner. “I have been empowering artistes under my stable as a way of giving back to the community.

“I have since identified a piece of land in Zaka where I come from which has been earmarked for the setting up of an arts centre. “I have realised that there is no need for talented artistes to travel to Harare in search of studios.

“In fact, I have realised that we can produce stars from ekhaya as long as we provide facilities where they can record. “This is part of my vision to set up the arts centre in Zaka as I celebrate my 40th birthday,” he said.

Besides the arts centre, Mazuruse has been donating mbiras to less privileged children countrywide. “I have been moving around donating equipment like mbiras to marginalised artists. “I was recently in Chegutu and soon I am travelling to Zaka where we are set to donate to six schools.

“As a producer, this is the only way I can empower others, especially those who have an interest in music,” he said. The versatile instrumentalist said he was also touched by the plight of some children who cannot raise money to buy shows.

“I have been working with Fagio Marova on the #Donate A Shoe campaign where we managed to assist school pupils. “In this era that we are in, we don’t expect children to be attending class on barefoot.  “As a nation, we need to practice the culture of giving sharing.”

As a fallback plan, Mazuruse is also into farming. “Firstly, I have invested in the right people who can always come to my rescue when I fall on hard times.

“I’m also into farming and recently I enrolled for a Music degree with MSU and I see myself becoming a lecturer soon. “Of course I can play music well but now I can brag a lot since I can read and understand music well. “Education is another instrument I am doing because I know I will fully utilise it,” he said.

Mazuruse was born on June 6, 1980, in Zaka, Masvingo. He attended Dabwa Primary School before he enrolled at St Anthon’s for secondary education.

He completed his Advanced Level at Mufakose High 2. After school, he studied CIS Part B but he dropped along the way so that he could pursue music. Like most artists, he learnt to play musical instruments in church when he came to Harare.

In Harare, he established himself as a producer and session musicians who continue to wean off stars. However, exploitation is also rife in his profession some artistes (names withheld) don’t want to pay for service rendered.

There are also some artists who promise to settle their debts after launching their projects but hard come back afterwards. As a producer with vast experience, Mazuruse reckons focus, professionalism and creativity remain key for one’ success in the game.

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